The importance of building a strong brand identity and the subsequent brand image portrayed is one of the most valuable learnings I am taking away from the SFM unit.
I have learnt that adjusting strategy can help recreate and refresh brand identity. Adapting the 4 M’s model (Varley et al., 2018 forthcoming) Saint Laurent updated its image by rebranding and recreating its value proposition by utilising its competencies.
Men – They re-vitalised their primary resources and hired Hedi Slimane as creative director. He maintained a singular vision and a consistent approach to transform Yves Saint Laurent into Saint Laurent Paris focusing on highly commercial products.
Money – Saint Laurent increased advertising spending and reinvested significantly into communications to promote their change to a younger rock and roll archetypal brand.
Minds – With a new brand personality, they also re-envisaged their brand reputation. Hedi Slimane created a new ‘mood’ for the brand looking to youth and pop culture. Engagement was ensued by intense marketing and advertising and they have created a devoted tribe of followers. A positive brand image is created through these marketing campaigns that use ambassadors like Marilyn Manson to reach these consumers.
The brand now implements a user oriented positioning. Adapting image and identity has successfully generated a new brand DNA for Saint Laurent and subsequent equity. This unit has helped me understand how strategic choices revitalised the brand.
Dazed (2017) Saint Laurent Music Project. Available at: http://www.dazeddigital.com/fashion/article/15951/1/saint-laurent-music-project (Accessed: 7 December 2017).
Varley, R., Gee, E., et al. (2018 forthcoming) Fashion Management: A Strategic Approach. Chapter 2 & 4.